MY CURATED LIFE

JUNE SARPONG

The term ‘multi-hyphenate’ is bandied around a lot, but in the case of June Sarpong —both MBE and OBE — it’s truly justified. The first-ever Director of Creative Diversity for the BBC, a TV presenter and former DJ; she got her big break on MTV and became famous as a frontwoman for Channel 4’s T4 in the UK. Sarpong was born in East London to Ghanaian parents. Her family left behind an affluent life in Accra, moving to London to raise their children in working-class Newham. Sarpong credits her childhood with giving her the tools to deal with the many ‘isms’ she’s encountered during her career (racism, sexism, elitism…) She’s the author of Diversify: Six Degrees of Integration and The Power of Women: Why Feminism Is Good For Everyone. And Sarpong’s signature style is as dazzling as her career. Watch the film to hear all about her love of comfy knits, cool bags, big hoops, bright lips, and, most importantly, a bargain…

Woman in workwear clothing

The secret of Sarpong’s style lies in a mix of high-octane sparkle, with a serious dose of comfort. ‘During the day, my style is relaxed. I’m trackie bottoms and jumpers. I’m all about Zoom chic.’ When it comes to putting on the glitz, however, it’s time for what Sarpong calls ‘Ghana glamour’: ‘I grew up around women who really loved to dress up and who enjoyed being women.’ That means color, print and a maximalist approach to accessories. ‘The more the better. I’m not one of those people who’s all, ‘oh, I just want small dainty little diamonds,’ God no! I love, love, love hoops. I like bangles, I like rings…’ A handbag-lover to boot, take a tip from June and invest in a piece from the new crop of bag brands like Mansur Gavriel and Danse Lente. ‘It’s nice to champion new designers. It’s great that you now can find stuff that really looks fabulous and high wattage but is also affordable.’